AbstractID: 7365 Title: Clinical Impact of Radiotherapy Extensions

AbstractID: 7365 Title: Clinical Impact of Radiotherapy Extensions
The DICOM 3 medical image standard was developed in the 1980’s. The Radiotherapy
Extensions (DICOM RT) were added later, in the 1990’s. Consequently, DICOM 3 is widely used
to transmit image data in Radiation Oncology Departments but the use of DICOM RT for
radiotherapy objects is much less prevalent.
Stanford’s Radiation Oncology department has a typical mix of systems and vendors in the
treatment delivery chain. There are a number of sources of diagnostic images – CT, MRI and
PET, tissue contouring workstations, several radiation treatment planning systems for
“conventional”, intensity-modulated, or stereotaxic treatment plans, and two accelerator types,
isocentric and robot-based.
Each of these systems, representing a total of 11 vendors, have their own proprietary data
formats. Transmitting data between these systems would require a potentially large number of
data conversions without the lingua franca of DICOM and DICOM RT.
In addition to the commercial systems, we have developed a number of in-house applications
which support the work of the clinic. As application developers we would prefer to use DICOM
and DICOM RT to avoid being tied to proprietary data formats. This is not always possible
because some vendors have not fully embraced DICOM.
This presentation will examine the use (or lack thereof) of DICOM and DICOM RT in the radiation
oncology environment, and will consider the challenges to be overcome in making it ubiquitous in
the clinic.